Prime Obsession

Prime Obsession:  Bernhard Riemann and the greatest problem in Mathematics

by John Derbyshire

PrimeObsessionCheck out John Derbyshire's book about Bernhard Riemann. Riemann was one of the leading mathematicians of the 19th century. In his short career he introduced ideas of fundamental importance in complex analysis, real analysis, differential geometry, number theory and other subjects.  His work in differential geometry provided the mathematical basis for the general theory of relativity.  He created the Riemann hypothesis, which remains unsolved today.

"Bernhard Riemann would make any list of the greatest mathematicians ever.  In 1859, he proposed a formula to count prime numbers that has defied all attempts to prove it true.  This new book tackles the Riemann hypothesis.  Partly a biography of Rimemann, Derbyshire's work presents more technical details about the hypothesis and will probably attract math recreationists.  It requires, however, only a college prep level of knowledge because of its crystalline explanations.  Derbyshire treats the hypothesis historically, tracking increments of progress with sketches of well-known people, such as David Hilbert and Alan Turing, who have been stymied by it.  Carrying a million-dollar bounty, the hypothesis is the most famous unsolved problem in math today, and interest in it will both be stated and stoked by these able authors."  Gilbert Taylor.